07 Oct, 2011
Samplings on the Fourteen, Berjaya Times Square Hotel
Posted by: Wen Ching In: Western Food
Samplings on the Fourteen is a relatively young restaurant in the fine dining scene. Having launched its presence in the scene but a few months ago, it now seeks to cement its place as one of the best in such a competitive industry.
How would it do so? By the only few ways that matter, of course: providing a perfect dining ambiance, providing excellent and attentive waiting staff and last but not least, serving up some top class food.
The interior of the restaurant is classy and elegant, but avoids being pretentious. Despite how it may look in the picture, the dim lighting in the restaurant set a perfect atmosphere for dining. Coupled with a much praised table setting and soothing jazz music in the background, it has indeed succeeded in creating a great dining environment.
Located in the Berjaya Times Square Hotel, class was definitely to be expected of the restaurant and it delivered. As the name suggests, one can find Samplings on the Fourteen on the 14th floor of the hotel, on the East wing. As a result, Samplings offers a remarkable view to go along with remarkable food. Those intending to come with a special someone, take note: make a reservation for a table near the window (your partner will surely appreciate such a romantic gesture come the end of the meal).
Samplings sports an open kitchen concept which blends in very well with the layout of the restaurant. This ensures that customers will be able to observe that the chefs are always professional in preparing the food and more importantly, one can be sure that the kitchen is clean.
Serving Western classic fine dining cuisine, guests perusing the a la carte menu are able to choose from 7 courses, namely: ‘To Begin’, ‘To Warm’, ‘To Grain’, ‘To Fish’, ‘To Meat’, ‘To Grill’ and ‘To Finish’. However, we were invited to sample the Festival Menu in conjunction with the Malaysia International Gourmet Festival (MIGF) 2011 by Siew Yee (whom we’d like to thank) along with My Story~.
While not on the menu, we were lucky enough to sample a small portion of Salad with Nata de Coco. The acidic taste of the dressing along with the sweetness of the coconut jelly did well to whet our appetite.
Combination of Seared Foie Gras, Tomato and Onion Tart & US Scallops with Yellow Mushrooms with Chive Salad
Cloudy Bay, Chardonnay
The foie gras (pictured above, front) was rich and creamy and was perfectly seared, resulting in the top layer being slightly caramelised which added a very enjoyable dimension to it. It was complemented very nicely by the tomato and sweet onion tart below it. The US Scallops were pan seared over high heat which ensured that it retained its juiciness and as it was largely unseasoned, the natural sweetness of the scallops could be experienced.
Light Smoked Duck Essence with Ginseng Root and Raviolini
Cloudy Bay, Chardonnay
The menu was designed with us, the customers, in mind. As such, the next course was a consommé made from smoked duck essence – essentially a very light soup so as not to fill us up, but with a twist. The addition of ginseng root gave the soup an oriental flavour which augmented the taste of the soup for the better. The skin of the smoked duck was present in the soup and was a joy to bite into. The raviolini was filled with the minced meat of the smoked duck. The smoked duck here was truly utilised to the fullest extent with great result!
Roasted Australian Pistachio Crusted Baby Veal Rack served with Greens, Potato Confit and Truffle Jus
Nicolas Catena Zapata, Malbec
A signature dish from Chef Val and it was not hard to see why. We were presented with a tender and juicy medium rare baby veal rack. The top of the outer layer was coated with pistachios which gave it a slightly crunchy texture along with a hint of extra flavour. Don’t forget the spinach pureè and truffle jus to for with the veal for a perfect experience!
Cajun Spiced Black Cod
Seared Prawns, Vanilla Oil and Escarole Risotto
The cajun spiced black cod was very impressive. Topped with a succulent seared prawn, the cod sat on top of the escarole risotto wrapped around in a potato ring. The black cod was very fresh and soft, the spices gave the fish an extra sensation but not overpowering to cover the natural flavour of the fish. The risotto was nice and creamy especially eaten with the potato ring. It was an unusual but delicious combination!
Ricotta Cheese Cake
Chestnut Mousse with Raspberry Coulis and Almond Crisp
Peter Lehmann Barossa Art Late Harvest Frontignac
Definitely one of the best cheese cakes we’ve had in recent times! The texture, while rich, was not too heavy which was appropriate at the end of such a filling meal. We would not mind more of it for sure! One could end the meal with a choice of coffee or tea as well to go with the dessert.
All-in-all, a very enjoyable line up for MIGF 2011. To reiterate, we had the Full Festival Menu which is priced at RM350++ per person with wine and RM180++ per person without wine. There is also a Light Festival Menu with a totally different line-up of food (but it sounds delicious as well) which is priced at RM100++ per person. These menus will be going on for the duration of the Festival, in other words, the whole month of October. No doubt Samplings on the Fourteen will make its mark in the fine dining scene if they keep up such a high standard. We leave you now with a picture of one of the views you could get from Samplings. There’s nothing like watching traffic go by while you’re cosy and comfortable on the inside, is there not?
Samplings on the Fourteen
14th Floor, East Tower,
1 Jalan Imbi,
55100 Kuala Lumpur,
Tel: 603- 2117 8000 ext 8131